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Drexel Lends Garbo to Ferragamo

February 18, 2010 — Black and White Photograph of Garbo in Black Dress and Heels sitting down

The Drexel Historic Costume Collection (DHCC) has lent a famous gown, worn by actress Greta Garbo, to the La Triennale Design Museum in Milan for the exhibition Greta Garbo, Legacy as a Fashion Icon.  Clare Sauro, DHCC curator, headed to Milan to oversee the installation of the garment. This is her first major international exhibition loan since taking over as curator in 2009. Garbo had strong ties to Salvatore Ferragamo, the founder of the high-end fashion house, during the 1920s and 30s.  Ferragamo made shoes for Garbo that she wore to premier Hollywood events, including for the gown the DHCC lent the museum.

The DHCC is home to over 10,000 garments collected by the university over nearly a century.  The Garbo dress lent for exhibition was designed by Gilbert Adrian for the 1931 MGM film Inspiration.  It was one of three pieces donated by Mrs. Tomas E. Burns Jr. in 1976 and was one of many garments that have been digitized and archived in the DHCC database by fashion professor Kathi Martin. The Ferragamo Museum found the Garbo dress through the college’s DHCC database.